Newportia sabina Chamberlin, 1942

Junior, Amazonas Chagas & Shelley, Rowland M., 2003, The centipede genus Newportia Gervais, 1847, in Mexico: description of a new troglomorphic species; redescription of N. sabina Chamberlin, 1942; revival of N. azteca Humbert & Saussure, 1869; and a summary of the fauna (Scolopendromorpha: Scolopocryptopidae: Newportiinae), Zootaxa 379, pp. 1-20 : 9-11

publication ID 10.11646/zootaxa.379.1.1


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Newportia sabina Chamberlin, 1942


Newportia sabina Chamberlin, 1942

Figs. 9–16 View FIGURES 9–16 .

Newportia sabina Chamberlin, 1942: 4 ; 1943: 9. Bücherl, 1959: 231, 235. Reddell & Mitchell, 1971 a:150. Schileyko & Minelli, 1999:291.

Type specimen. Holotype ( NMNH, examined) collected by C. Bolivar, B. Osorio, and M. Cardenas in July 1942 in Cueva de Los Sabinos , ca. 12.5 mi (20 km) NNE Ciudad Valles, Sierra de el Abra, San Luis Potosi, Mexico.

Diagnosis. Cephalic plate with two short, paramedian sutures arising from caudal border; caudal margin overlying 1 st tergite. Latter with prominent, transverse, procurved sulcus. Lateral tergal depressions present from 3 rd to 22 nd tergites, extending caudad from anterior margins but terminating before caudal margins. Sterna of segments 17–22 with short spurs anteriolaterad. Coxopleural processes prolonged, terminating in strong spines, with four shorter spines along ventral margins, one on caudal margin, and one in caudal part of right pore field. Tibiae of legs 2–20 with two distal spurs; claws not prolonged, legs 1–22 with two accessory spines at bases of claws. Ultimate prefemora with 4 and 7 strong, distinct, ventral spines on left and right legs, respectively, femora with 3 ventral spines; left tarsus with 39 distinct pseudosegments, right tarsus with 44.

Description. Body length 67 mm, maximum width 3.5 mm at tergite 16. General color of body, legs, and antennae light yellow, cephalic plate light chestnut. Cephalic plate: glabrous, longer than wide, sides slightly curved, with two short, paramedian sutures arising from caudal border; puncta sparse and shallow; caudal margin overlying 1st tergite ( Fig. 9 View FIGURES 9–16 ). Antennae: reaching back to segment six, with 17 antennomeres, articles 1 and 2, and ventral side of 3 rd, sparsely hirsute; remaining articles with dense, fine pubescence. Coxosternum: with a few hairs, without tooth plates. Forcipules: trochanteroprefemora with short, blunt teeth ( Fig. 10 View FIGURES 9–16 ). Tergites: smooth and glabrous. First tergite with transverse procurved sulcus giving rise to paired furcate sulci extending caudad and forming “W­shaped” configuration, with two paired sulci arising from base of former, angling slightly caudolaterad to caudal margin ( Fig. 9 View FIGURES 9–16 ). Complete paramedian sulci present on tergites 2–22; lateral depressions present from 3rd to 22nd tergites, terminating before anterior and caudal margins ( Fig. 11 View FIGURES 9–16 ). Ultimate tergite shorter than preceding, without sulci, with lateral carinae. Sternites: smooth, sterna 1–16 with a few short, scattered hairs anteriad, otherwise glabrous ( Fig. 12 View FIGURES 9–16 ); 17 th –22 nd sterna with a few short spurs anteriolaterad, with median depressions on 4 th –21 st sterna, terminating short of anterior and caudal margins. Ultimate sternite shorter than preceding, narrowing caudad, caudal border indented mediad ( Fig. 13 View FIGURES 9–16 ). Coxopleural process: prolonged and acuminate, terminating in a strong spine, with four shorter spines along ventral margins, one spine on caudal margin, and another spine in caudal part of right pore field; latter nearly covering entire coxopleurae ( Figs. 13–14 View FIGURES 9–16 ). Leg pairs 1–22: long and slender, ca. 2–3x lengths of corresponding tergites. First legs with one distolateral tibial spur apiece, tarsi undivided, without spurs. Tibiae of legs 2–20 with two distal spurs (one lateral and one ventral), those of 21st legs with one ventral spur, those of 22nd legs without spurs; legs 1–22 with two accessory spines at bases of claws, about half as long as claws, latter gently curved, not noticeably prolonged. Ultimate legs: lengths 21 mm; prefemora with 4 and 7 strong, distinct, ventral spines on left and right legs, respectively, largest much shorter than podomere diameters, distalmost positioned slightly more ventrad than others; femora with 3 ventral spines ( Figs. 15–16 View FIGURES 9–16 ); tibiae without spines. Tarsi with moderately dense pilosities; first tarsi shorter than tibiae; left second tarsus with 39 distinct pseudosegments, right second tarsus with 44.

Ecology. No habitat information is available for N. sabina , and the locations within Cueva de Los Sabinos and El Sotano de Yerbaniz where the species was found are unknown.

Distribution. Known from the type locality and the following additional cave in the Sierra de el Abra ( Fig. 17 View FIGURE 17 ):

San Luis Potosi: 14.1 mi (22.5 km) N Ciudad Valles, El Sotano de Yerbaniz , 8 January 1971, W. Elliott, J. Shepperd ( TMM 34840­1 View Materials ) .

Remarks. Chamberlin (1943) repeated the type locality data, and Nicholas (1962) and Reddell & Mitchell (1971 a) cited the species as occurring in Cueva de Los Sabinos. The Sierra de el Abra is a low lying mountain range extending roughly 100 mi (160 km) in a north­south direction from the Rio Tampaon, south of Ciudad Valles, San Luis Potosi, to the Rio Guayalejo, in southwestern Tamaulipas. Details of the mountains and caves, and a map of the area, are provided by Reddell & Mitchell (1971 a).

While N. sabina is also known only from caves, it is a larger, more heavily sclerotized, and more robust centipede than N. troglobia . The caudal legs and antennae are essentially as long as those of N. troglobia , but the other legs are noticeably shorter as are the claws and accessory claws. Whereas the spines on the caudal legs of N. troglobia are small, weak, and inconspicuous, those of N. sabina are strong, distinct, and more typical of surface species of Newportia . While N. troglobia exhibits the aura of an obligate troglobite, N. sabina appears more like an epigean species and less “cave adapted.” We believe that N. troglobia is restricted to subterranean environments, but N. sabina , like T. phanus , may be able to survive in epigean biotopes. Future collectors should investigate surface habitats in this region of San Luis Potosi for possible specimens.


Smithsonian Institution, National Museum of Natural History














Newportia sabina Chamberlin, 1942

Junior, Amazonas Chagas & Shelley, Rowland M. 2003

Newportia sabina

Schileyko, A. & Minelli, A. 1999: 291
Reddell, J. R. & Mitchell, R. W. 1971: 150
Bucherl, W. 1959: 231
Chamberlin, R. V. 1943: 9
Chamberlin, R. V. 1942: 4